I've gone a bit purple again and heard Lucy Winkett talk of the season as 'the sad, springtime of the church' on Radio 4's Thought for the Day today.
A moments chit chat please. Springtime is good, exciting and even the rain which falls today seems to be a warm, promising, spring shower and not, as my Aunty Brenda used to call it, 'that wet rain.'
Penitience = good. Reflection = good. Sadness = blind alley.
We haven't just chucked Jesus out into the wilderness again. He's not dead or going encore to his death. We don't have to wait until Easter Sunday to say Jesus is alive. He is alive through lent, pain and sadness. He will be alive on Good Friday. The church's year is about festival and memorial; not recreation.
You are allowed to be happy for the next six and a half weeks.